Permanent neutrality policy of Turkmenistan: A comparative analysis of Turkmenbashi and Berdimuhammedov eras

Thesis Type: Post Graduate

Institution Of The Thesis: Orta Doğu Teknik Üniversitesi, Faculty of Economic and Administrative Sciences, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, Turkey

Approval Date: 2019


Consultant: PINAR KÖKSAL


The aim of this thesis is to analyze the permanent neutrality policy of Turkmenistan, during the periods of the first and second presidents of the country (Saparmurad Niyazov Turkmenbashi, 1985-2006 and Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedov, 2006-present) in a comparative way by using Efraim Karsh’s neutrality model. In 1991, five Central Asian countries declared independence and seceded from the Soviet Union. Despite the fact that all of these states had more or less similar political and legal conditions back then, after 27 years they all ended up very differently. Among the five Central Asian countries, only Turkmenistan adopted this policy. Turkmenistan’s neutral status has played an important role in establishing cooperation with many states in the political, economic, humanitarian and other spheres, and in implementing a multilateral foreign policy strategy. This thesis, by providing a comparative analysis of how permanent neutrality is implemented in the country looks at the regional dynamics and conflicts that shaped the foreign policy options as well as responses of the two presidents. To do this, first a general background information on Turkmenistan as well as the history of this country is given. This is followed by the post-Soviet era developments that resulted in the adoption of permanent neutrality in the v periods of the two presidents of Turkmenistan. The primary methodological tool of the work was qualitative analysis utilizing primary and secondary sources in Turkmen, Russian, English and Turkish on the topic, including academic books, articles, newspapers, magazines and relevant official websites were used.